Rudy - Now More Than Ever: Remembering the Fallen
Editor's Note: Today marks the first in a series of daily posts on Rudy's 9/11 leadership, called "Rudy - Now More Than Ever." We all remember that Rudy was a hero on 9/11 and beyond, but five years on, memories can fade. This series will tell the story of that leadership, and why our country needs that kind of leadership now more than ever. -RB
Terry Hatton was a hero. A 21 year veteran of the FDNY, Captain Hatton lead the elite Rescue 1 team. Over his 21 years of service Capt. Hatton had received 19 medals for his service.
Capt. Hatton was married to Beth Petrone, Mayor Giuliani's executive assistant for eighteen years. Hizzoner described them as "inseparable". In his book Leadership, Rudy remembers their relationship:
"Beth and Terry fell in love from the first moment they laid eyes on each other. After they were married (Rudy had performed the ceremony at Gracie Mansion himself), Terry would send Beth flowers, and sometimes he'd pick her up after work, hanging out on the sofa outside my office until she was ready to leave."
During the mayhem of 9/11, Mayor Giuliani realized the danger his friend and husband of his longtime assistant was in.
"Was Terry working?" Hizzoner asked Petrone.
"I could see tears in her eyes. I hugged her, and noticed that for the first time I also had a tear in my eye. Beth said to me very quietly, 'He's gone.' I said, 'You don't know that yet. We will do everything to find him.' "
Captain Terry Hatton lost his life fighting to save others as the Towers collapsed, along with 342 of his fellow firefighters and paramedics.
"Some of his tools and keys were found by the remaining members of Rescue 1, a small solace for a heartbroken squad. I brought those things to Beth at Terry's wake, along with Part of his uniform. I remained at the wake a long time, taking in the articles and photos on posters devoted to this good man. I noticed a photo of Terry rescuing a child from a fire. He kept that photo in his locker a reminder of the best part of his job, of why he risked everything to help people he didn't know."
"His funeral was two days later, on October 4th at St. Patrick's Cathedral (Mayor Giuliani would attend every service for every firefighter and police officer killed in the 9/11 attacks). To see that beautiful church, packed with people who loved Terry and Beth-and with many simply there to show their respect-that's why I know how important it is to show up at funerals."
It is hardly ever mentioned that Hizzoner lost several close friends that day. Of course, he was not alone in this. First Responders, Firemen, and Police continued to do their jobs despite not knowing the fate of many of their friends and family members. It is a testament to all New Yorkers that they showed the world how evil can be matched by duty, goodness, and honor.